Hungary's OTP interested in buying more Slovenian banks: CEO

LJUBLJANA (Reuters) - Hungary's OTP OTPB.BU is interested in buying more banks in Slovenia after purchasing the regional unit of France's Societe Generale SOGN.PA last year, OTP's chief executive and chairman Sandor Csanyi told a news conference in Ljubljana on Wednesday.

He said OTP, which operates banks in 12 European countries, also plans to expand into new countries and possibly beyond Europe, adding that it was also looking at some Asian countries.

He said OTP hopes to increase its market share in Slovenia to about 25%-30% in terms of balance sheet assets over the medium term from 9% at present, enabling it to run its business more efficiently.

He also said OTP plans to exit Slovakia “before spring” this year as it had been unable to raise its market share there above 3% over the past years.

“Our plan is to increase market share everywhere where we have presence,” Csanyi said.

OTP shares were trading 0.3% higher at 14,740 forints at 1108 GMT, in line with the main market index .BUX.

Reporting by Marja Novak, editing by Louise Heavens and Kirsten Donovan